According to Louisiana Lawsuit Abuse Watch, there’s been a 36% increase in the filing of disability-access complaints in Louisiana from 2011 to 2016. Executive Director Lana Venable says many of these are frivolous lawsuits directed at small businesses.

"It's designed to make sure that all of our disabled friends and family have access to public places.  Unfortunately, what we are seeing is that it is being abused in many cases," says Venable.

Venable says they often see serial plaintiffs in these cases going after minor violations and it doesn’t take much for a business to be out of compliance.

"Things as simple as a bathroom mirror being an inch too high, a sign being missing, or even the paint being faded on a disabled parking space," says Venable of just some of the possible violations.

Venable says for businesses to protect themselves from lawsuits of the nature, it’s important they stay vigilant about their facilities.

"We are continuing to see this trend rise and we're hoping to shine a light on it and encourage people to understand their role and take responsibility to prevent these things from beginning to happen," says Venable.

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